The planning and preparation phase included several areas: first and foremost, Rob nailed the food part by creating a shared menu and shopping list. Each day had detailed menu for breakfast as well as post ride appetizers, followed by the main course and concluding with deserts. Once this was taken care of, we could pay attention to the lower priority items: training, transport to the ride start, and of course, the bikes.
For myself, the "training" phase was reduced to convincing myself that I had lots of base left from the last year (I did manage to convince myself about it and quickly dismissed any ideas about actually testing the base by riding). Two days before leaving for Colorado, I rode a very nice loop on paved paths and gravel trails around Seattle and decided that 1600ft vertical over 65 miles was a clear proof that I would be OK climbing 4000-7000ft a day on the Kokopelli trail.
Getting to Fruita, CO was just a routine: get up at 3:30AM to catch a 6AM flight, watch the sun rise over the Cascades as we climbed out of Seattle area...
But the decor of this fancy restaurant clearly indicated that we were approaching a bicycling friendly area.
Next came the question of bike: pack and fly my Mojo there or rent a bike in Fruita? I eventually decided to rent a Rocky Mountains Element 970 29-er, BC Edition from OTE Sports.
John and Doug chose the beefier Santa Cruz Superlight 29ers in bright orange colors, making sure we would not be shot at by the local hunters.
|John and Landon setting up the Superlight 29|
Rob brought his version of trail weapon, proving that full suspension, carbon frames, straight handlebars, narrow saddles and heavy Camelbaks were all but unnecessary.